Year: 2007 Source: Journal of Counseling & Development, v.85, no.2, (Spring 2007), p.182-188 SIEC No: 20090716

A sample of 40 suicide notes were analyzed for motivational content in relation to an existential-constructivist theory of suicide. Results generally supported the 4 theoretical categories of somatic, relational, spiritual, & psychological motivations, with 39 notes having content that could be classified according to these categories. Psychological motivations were found to be the most prevalent, followed by relational, spiritual, & somatic concerns. Notes of completed suicides included more relational motivations than did those of suicide attempters, & older writers showed more psychological & fewer spiritual motivations than did younger writers. Recommendations are offered for revising the theory to provide a stronger meaning-based understanding of suicidal behaviour. (22 refs.)